What other books have influenced you?
This is a real toughy. All of them to some degree. I am in my late fifties and have been reading all my life. The great Anthony Burgess didn’t distinguish between ‘Literature’ and other genres, in what makes a great novel. I have read much Science Fiction, but mostly written last century. I think great novels are timeless. Great Sci Fi can be superseded by time and technology, but the ideas and the characters carry on. “Slan,” by AE Van Vogt is as brilliant today as when it was written. But a space ship travelling at 300mph. Things have moved on.
A good novel, like good music is priceless, wherever it comes from.
Sci Fi, Asimov, Clarke, Simak, Van Vogt, Card
Fantasy, Tolkien, Donaldson, Peake, Silverberg, Moorcock
Aldous Huxley is a genius.
Lit, Burgess, Fowles, L Durrell, Hesse, Camus, Hemingway, Steinbeck, Greene.
Action (thoughtful), Deighton, Clavell, Brown, Yoshikawa.
Humour, Sharp, Adams, Moorcock, Elton, Bryson.
Classic, Dickens, Voltaire, Balzac, Goethe.
That’s enough of lists. Modern stuff. I liked The Girl With All The Gifts, by MR Carey. I missed him at this year’s Swecon, as I was only there for a few hours. Pity.
I think Philip Pullman is brilliant, and George RR Martin. I loved Game of Thrones, Ayra Stark is an awesome character.
What are you working on now?
Three concurrent projects.
I am writing the second book in the Polly Granger Series, sequel to The Lift. Set five years after Polly meets up with Walter and André.
As yet untitled, the fourth book in the Friendship Series is well underway, and finally treading water is Vigilante. This was originally two connected short stories in my book Equations Of Being. I always felt it could grow into a novel, and it’s about 20 chapters in. A superhero noir.
Any advice for new authors?
Yes, copyright your book, and don’t blog every chapter. The second caused me massive headaches with Amazon. The first fixed it.
What’s the best advice you ever had?
That’s a pretty broad question. My Dad told me it’s better to be half an hour early than five minutes late. I guess we can apply that to all situations, even preparing a book for publishing.
What are you reading now?
Dan Brown’s new book, Origin. Very good.
What’s next for you as a writer?
More writing, more travel, which often inspires writing, both in content, and opportunity. Audio books.
What books would you take on to a desert island?
The ones I have read again and again.
Lord of the Rings, A Song of Ice and Fire, Coleen McCulloch’s Masters Of Rome, I missed her out, absolutely brilliant, and Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse.